I was inducted into the Gravett lie very early on in my marriage. When my husband and I first moved to San Antonio, we lived with my in-laws. We sat watching the news one evening. It was during the news cast that my sweet newly-wed husband says," Hey did you know that Albert Flores is the Spurs Coyote?" (Albert Flores, is a weatherman.) I thought to myself, he seems a little too chubby to be the coyote. After all, the coyote does all sorts of stunts. I was a tad suspicious, so I ask my father-in-law. (A little background here, my father-in-law APPEARS to be the nicest person ever.) He looks so kind and so I think, HE would never lie to me. Well... as the story goes it was several months that I believed Albert Flores was in fact the Spurs Coyote, because my sweet father-in-law fooled me.
Fast forward about 10 years. It was around Thanksgiving when my mother-in-law and I started talking about Christmas presents. Of course, we were trying to coordinate the gifts we planned on getting for my daughter. It was then that the ultimate plan was hatched. We decided that grandma and grandpa would get a bike for my daughter. Then we would also, buy a bike for Grandpa (AKA: Happy). HOWEVER, we told him that it was for my husband. So began the fun and games....
It was just after, Thanksgiving when my mother-in-law called a "Family Meeting." This family meeting was to discuss Christmas. She wanted everyone to commit to not buying gifts for the adults. I began to laugh as my father-in-law sat there saying, "BUT if you already have a gift for someone then that is ok." He was talking about HIS bike, that he thought was my husbands. I laughed and laughed, but he never caught on. The laughs continued as he tried to keep my husband out of their garage one day, afraid he would see the hidden bike. He told the story of how he maneuvered things around so that "The Bike" would not be discovered.
The joke hit the peek of funny two days before Christmas. We discussed the assembly of the bike. We suggested that it be taken some where to have someone put it together. Happy INSISTED, that he could and very much wanted to put it together himself. There were rapid fire text messages between the rest of us as we snickered about him putting his own Christmas present together. My sweet father-in-law was putting together his very own bike. He commented on it being reminiscent of the few memories he had with his own father, putting bikes together. It was late at night when he decided to take it for a test ride. We are not sure what exactly happened next but this is how it plays out in my creative mind.
"The alley is dark. It is ominously dark as if to foreshadow upcoming disaster. He can not see where he is going, when he starts to feel off balance. Oh no, he is going to fall, BUT WAIT, this is not HIS bike, it is a BIKE he is gong to give to his son. This BIKE can NOT have a blemish. It must be pristine, it must look as if it has never been ridden before. That is when he, in his own words,"sacrificed my body for the bike." While I like to make it more dramatic by imagining him laying out in the alley with a bruised body and an injured ego, that is not completely true. He only scraped his arm and knee."
The next morning we awoke to the news of his fall via text message. I admit, that I laughed so hard, I thought I might pee my pants! My mother-in-law said she was already in bed asleep when he fell. She questioned, what would have happened if he had really hurt himself? She speculated that he would have laid in the alley all night. While this would not be funny had he really hurt himself, it is HYSTERICAL since he is fine. She described him as sore from the fall and occasionally wincing with pain. To top it off, he was going to have to fake it in front of my husband, because it was still not Christmas and "The Bike" had not been revealed.
Finally Christmas had arrived. Together my in-laws wheeled the bikes into our living room, to give their gifts. It was then, that we confessed "The Bike" was in fact Happys! I laughed and said, "You put together your own Christmas present!" He was surprised, and even had a tear in his eye. I like to think the tear was shed over the pain of the fall, but in reality, the tear was over the gift. It was the perfect gift for him to share with his only grand daughter.
Christmas is and should be a joyous time. It should be fun and filled with laughter and love. It should be a time when even if your gift isn't what you thought it was, it doesn't matter because the real joy is in making fun out of what you got!
Merry Christmas to all......
This is my mindset, now let me hear yours!